“There can be no deep disappointment where there is not deep love…” — Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.
I am still without sanctuary. My life an American atrocity in this land of the American dream so rife with American hypocrisy.
“My country, tis of thee, sweet land of liberty, of thee I sing…” Though hate still rings. And among other things: my soul is not rested.
“O beautiful for spacious skies; for amber waves of grain…” O scrofulous for sordid lies; for generations of deep agonizing pain.
America’s most hated. America’s most loved, we are. Castrated. Infiltrated. She mercilessly spills our blood. Cascading streams of black souls in waters cold, disemboweled by hate and lies. The cries of a people too long denied our American birthright. Sons and daughters of the light repelled by systematic white scheme. Still, America, it is of thee we sing.
Though for too long denied before let in. Now volunteer slavery? Still indentured and condemned by the color of our skin — light brown or deep dark coffee. Bearers of racial antipathy.
Our soul is still not yet rested.
“For purple mountain majesties, above thy fruited plain…” With lucrative paychecks dangling, our soul America still seeks to claim. Daring us to speak our piece or kneel amid hate’s unyielding weight. Seeking to erase from our psyche and souls and from history’s slate the tragedy inflicted by one nation upon its own sons. Pretending that racism is now dead and at last gone. America who seeks to squelch our travail and bittersweet song.
We sing on. Perennially with brother Marvin Gaye: “What’s going on?” Until freedom rings: “Picket lines and picket signs. Don’t punish me with brutality…” Don’t afflict me with the tentacles of slavery.
Our souls are not rested.
America the beautiful. America that esteems symbols above humankind. America that covets nationalism but despises the melanin in my skin, the unrequited American dream that is mine. America numb to her pretentious audacity to condemn silent protests against a Star Spangled lie. America that so clearly sees my speck. But remains blind to the two-by-four in her own eye.
Stiff-necked and proud beholders of a tri-colored cloth that waves in winds of contradiction against “liberty and justice for all.” Through Tiki torch haze, we hear hate’s evil call. Rising again in this nation with sickening reverberations. Witness hate’s resurrected manifestations.
Hear presidential justification while we yet pour libations. For African-American ancestors whose blood yet cries for justice from premature graves. That still linger like the caustic stench of human flesh set ablaze by American “patriots” in a frothing lynching craze.
“I pledge allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands…” So why in America am I still not a man?
Why has my peaceful dissent to respectfully kneel and not to stand now become America’s line drawn in the sand?
It is oppression’s hand. Same old plan.
To disenfranchise. To keep the black man in his place. The living embodiment of American hypocrisy. To embrace freedom and democracy while spitting in the black face.
Staring at us with murderous revulsion, revealing bitter compulsions. Enraptured by patriotic convulsions. Praising God on Sundays as the merciful Creator. But oblivious to the great sin of being a hater!
The American conscience seared by centuries of evil incantations cast upon indigenous natives and people of color: Wounded Knee. The Trail of Tears. Systemic racism against black sisters and brothers. For so many years. Shed so many tears.
“America! America! God shed His grace on thee. And crown thy good with brotherhood from sea to shining sea…” O how I love thee, America. Except America still hates me.
And my soul is not rested.
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